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best outliner you use? (2018)

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Posted by Stephen Zeoli
Apr 7, 2018 at 09:13 PM


Thanks for the comments, Jaslar. Speaking of appreciation, I appreciate your reference to Pellucidar!


Posted by Luhmann
Apr 8, 2018 at 01:12 AM


Dynalist seems to be the best option right now. And the developers are very active. If you find it limited I suggest working with Dynalist to improve their product. Workflowy has picked up a bit recently, but I’m still not convinced that they can catch up. Outlinely hasn’t updated in 7 months. Mubu (Chinese only) has a nice native app on iOS but otherwise is somewhat more limited than Dynalist (not to mention keeping your data on Chinese servers). I don’t like OmniOutliner at all. That’s pretty much it as far as I’m concerned. I don’t know of any other apps out there that meet my needs for a decent outliner. I know other people on this forum are perfectly happy to use folding text editors, task managers, and other apps as an outliner, but I need a dedicated outliner for some of my work and these are the only ones I’ve been able to find that are any good. Like I said, since Dynalist seems to be the best of the lot, it seems worth supporting their efforts. It isn’t just a matter of what is the best right now, but which app shows the most potential to grow in the near future, and for me that is Dynalist. (Take a look at their roadmap on Trello.)


Posted by satis
Apr 8, 2018 at 08:16 PM


Outlinely had potential, but as noted it hasn’t been updated in quite a while, its developer has remained anonymous, and its blog is defunct. Not good signs.

Checkvist is one alternative I’m not sure has been given a lot of attention. I haven’t parsed its details but it seems to offer the same general feature-set and UI as Workflowy/Dynalist, and offers an open API for integrations with Zapier and other tools (like Evernote or Asana). I haven’t used it, but it also has a mobile app in addition to web view. Free, with pro version that add 1Gb attachments (no inline image attachments though), calendar integration, repeating tasks and reminders, read-only sharing and Dropbox integration. Pricing is $39/yr or $3.90/month compared to Dynalist’s $96/yr $9.99/month and Workflowy’s $49/yr $4.99/month


Posted by Marbux
Apr 11, 2018 at 04:09 AM


I’m so thoroughly enamored of NoteCase Pro that I aid in its development as a volunteer.

I do a lot of online research and writing in aid of legal research and historical articles, as well as other notetaking.

NC Pro has a multitude of features. Everything I expect from a client-side outliner, but most importantly for me:

* Runs on multiple operating systems, *nix, OS X, WIndows, etc.
* Exports to simple HTML with a hyperlinked table of contents, suitable for pasting to all online apps that accept raw HTML.
* Hierarchical and flat list views of nodes (list view can be filled by, inter alia, user actions, document search, and scripts; enables to escape the limits of the hierarchy; e.g., double-click on a tag to list all nodes that have that tag; list view is in memory only)
* It just may be the most extensible outliner on the market, currently with 373 programmable methods exported to the embedded and extremely fast Lua script interpreter (one of those methods can execute most user actions). I’ve written well over 500 extensions for it.

Other notable features:

* customizable GUI with 3-5 panes (tree view, list view, note pane, tags pane, attachments pane; tags pane can be small or full column)
* rich text editing
* very large number of import/export formats
* strong document encryption
* five native file formats
* networked distribution, installation, and updating of plugins.
* up to 20 documents loaded concurrently
* clipboard history of clips made with other programs
* hoisting
* play/record audio notes
* per document node bookmarking
* hyperlink to nodes and inline text
* node cloning (maintains ability to edit from the original or any clone)
* node file attachments
* node tagging
* node and document custom properties
* node joining and splitting
* columns views and sorts by 14 node properties plus custom node properties
* extremely versatile document search: text string, Perl-Compatible regular expressions, boolean (search results can be displayed in list view of all nodes with hits)
* auto-linkification of URLs
* document sync via a networkable server
* document merge with diff display
* AutoCompletion of strings
* AutoReplace abbreviation expansion (can also launch scripts)
* spellchecker support
* markup and code syntax highlighting
* customizable toolbars and keyboard shortcuts
* multiple level undo and redo
* shares 2 native document formats with NoteCase Pro Android version (less mature), enabling synchronization
* ships with a wide variety of scripts
There’s a more detailed feature list here. http://notecasepro.com/features.php

While the NC Pro basic features are simple to use, the program is capable of satisfying some of the wildest urges of a outliner geek user. It scratches my itches.


Posted by Bernhard
Apr 11, 2018 at 07:23 AM


Marbux wrote:
I’m so thoroughly enamored of NoteCase Pro that I aid in its development
>as a volunteer.

Notecase Pro is a very descent software. Unfortunately, even the last version for macOS (v4.3.4) is only 32-bit. So it wil not run anymore under future versions of macOS.


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